Local underwriters have been tipped to adopt insurance-focused technology known as “insurtech” to double coverage of underserved populations from the current three percent.
The industry is under pressure to innovate and outpace existing traditional brick-and-mortar systems.
Insurers including about 60 insurance tech startups heard at a conference in Nairobi that players must utilise technology to make products relevant to customers and create new opportunities or their traditional business models will be extinct.
“East Africa’s mobile penetration gives great opportunities for disruptions in the insurance sector,” said Market Minds founder, Sebastian De Zulueta, one of the organisers of the recent conference.
Kenya’s mobile penetration hit 100 per cent for the first time as active customer subscription touched 46.6 million, last December, official data show.
But challenges including a lack of awareness among customers and high cost of premiums have locked many Kenyans from accessing insurance, according to several studies. Kenya’s penetration is estimated at 2.93 percent.